Federal EPA Enforcement Reduced
President Bush has proposed reducing the EPA's enforcement staff in Washington and regional offices by 8 percent, while providing $25 million in new grants to the states for enforcement activities. Bush and EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman have called for reduced federal oversight and intervention and expanded cooperation between state environmental protection agencies and industry. The House Appropriations Committee recently approved funding for the EPA next year that includes the administration's proposed cuts in enforcement. The Senate Appropriations Committee subsequently voted to restore the funding. The Justice Department's budget for prosecuting industrial polluters would not be affected by the proposed cuts.